IN a game decided by less than a full score, you can always isolate individual instants and claim they made the difference. Had Edinburgh kept out the lineout drive from which Glasgow’s George Turner scored, for example, they might have held on to win rather than losing 20-16 at Scotstoun on Saturday night.

But the bigger picture for the losers was that too many things had gone wrong for them, all of those things contributing to their defeat in the first 1872 Cup match of the season. As they look ahead to the return match at Murrayfield this Saturday, they can at least say that they had enough possession to win, and that over the piece it was their own errors, rather than the Warriors’ greater firepower, that was the most telling factor in the outcome. 

“We attacked well in parts,” was the verdict of Edinburgh centre Mark Bennett. “Glasgow defended well as well. It was a good physical game, and the bounce of the ball from a bit of play from I think George Horne put us on the back foot. Tough match.


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“I think we showed enough that we could have won that game. I think we made a few key errors of our own making at times, which put us in a tougher position than we had to be. We’ll review it on Monday and we’ll be ready for next week.

“I think it’s a performance we can be proud of. We did a lot of good stuff, it was just silly errors cost us at times. There were four points in it - it’s a bloody close game of rugby between two good sides.

“We created enough and we did a lot of good stuff. Hopefully we’ll be in a better spot next week.”

Edinburgh normally rely on their pack to give them front-foot ball, but in this case Glasgow seemed to have the measure of them, particularly in the scrum. As a consequence, their backs had to make the most of some pretty unpromising situations - and Bennett was especially impressed by the way in which the back three of full-back Blair Kinghorn and wingers Darcy Graham and Duhan van der Merwe managed to conjure up a threat. 

“I thought Blair did a lot of good stuff, Duhan did a lot of good stuff, Darcy Graham in parts was outstanding - certainly, the footwork he showed was unbelievable,” Bennett continued. “He’s impressive, Darcy. He showed at times that he’s on form and he’s someone that you can’t give too much space. He doesn’t need much space.”


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Bennett himself does not usually need much space, and is often more than capable of producing a change of pace that allows him to glide through a gap into open prairie. For much of this game, however, the defences had so much of the upper hand that even minimal space was just not there for the midfields, meaning that Bennett and his fellow-centre George Taylor often had to do a lot of spadework instead of being able to produce something more dynamic and destructive.

“I felt I carried hard,” the Scotland international added. “Didn’t see the ball in a lot of space, it was more trucking up, but I carried hard and defended pretty well.

“I would like more space, but you’re not always going to get space. Glasgow defended really, really well - they put a lot of heat in at the breakdown, which meant we didn’t get that much quick ball that’s going to give us that space in the outside channels. There’s games you’ve just got to roll your sleeves up and fight hard, and we did that.”